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I tell my friends often that my mom has her Masters in life-altering experiences.

Mother’s Day is a special time to let our mothers know how much they mean to us. Every year I feel like I come up short. I think this is because with every passing year I am more overwhelmed and grateful for all my mom has sacrificed for me in spite of her own hardships. One place where we have always bonded is in the realm of makeup. I think something interesting about a makeup routine is that it becomes somewhat of a comforting regimen we try to maintain – even in our darkest days, not just to feel pretty but to feel some level of normalcy when everything else in our life is shifting.

San Francisco girl meets country farm boy…

My mom met my dad at a summer camp. She then moved her life from the heart of San Francisco to the bush country of Northern Ontario so that my dad could pursue his dream of being a bush pilot. Let’s just say the ‘fashionista’ in her had a teensy bit of a hard time being that isolated in the woods. Nine months after they were married there was a terrible snow storm and my mom was informed that the plane my dad had been flying had not reached its destination. Three days of -40 degrees later, the search planes still had not found my dad and any hope he could still be alive was fading. On the third day a man was trying to catch sight of his sled which had become unhooked from his ski doo. He saw the wreckage of a plane on the horizon. He found my dad alive, but barely. Sadly, his passenger had not made it. My dad had broken his ankles very badly upon impact and his hands were frozen solid from the extreme cold. His rescue was nothing short of a miracle and the experience of spending three freezing days and nights on an ice-covered lake gave him an understanding of the fragility of life few can grasp.

My mom spent many long days in the hospital as my dad had his fingers amputated on his left hand and his right hand amputated at the wrist. The doctors fused his ankles with screws to hold them together. They said he would never walk again and he would never be able to fly a plane. He was walking a few months later and within a year he had his private flying license again. Before the crash he had loved painting scenic pictures. His new steel hook made it impossible so he learned to paint with his left hand. As a little girl I never heard him complain. I think my dad’s sense of humor and my mom’s unconditional support and encouragement had a lot to do with my dad adjusting to a new life of no longer having the full use of his hands and feet. In my three siblings and my opinion, it was nothing short of ‘cool’. Our dad was Captain Hook.


“Sometimes you just need to go buy yourself a new lip gloss.”

My aunt gave my mom this advice when she was spending those long hours in the hospital and rehabilitation with my dad. I have always embraced it, literally. However, I guess it is more of a metaphor for some. I think it is somewhat like a life raft for mothers to be able to do something for themselves, especially when they have children at home and are acting as a caregiver for a loved one at the same time. What is your mother’s ‘outlet’? Her flower garden? Trying out a new recipe? Entertaining family? Engaging in one of her favorite activities on Mother’s Day is a way to celebrate her life and feel her presence, even if she is far away or has passed away.

To truly put a makeup product to the test I try it on my mom.

When I started creating my makeup line over a decade ago, my mom was my number one ‘tester’. After being a freelance makeup artist for several years and having most of my clients be over forty years old,  I really wanted to create a line that enhanced the beauty of mature skin.  Growing up, my mom and I would often share a bathroom to get ready. When she did not even realize she was talking out loud about her frustration over not being able to find the right foundation coverage and texture, I was inquisitively listening. It is easy for a young model with flawless skin to wear a product and have it meet their needs. It is a different story as we get older or have problematic skin. So I asked my mom what her favorite products are from my line to this day and why. I hope you have a wonderful day celebrating your mom this Mother’s Day.

1. SKIN ELIXIR  She likes how it plumps up the skin around the eyes and allows the rest of the makeup to apply  smoothly with little blending.

3. HDD CREAM  The coverage of this product is great for rosacea and hyper-pigmentation. It also pairs well with her brightener around the eyes.

2. BIO-FOUNDATION  This product gives extra coverage and holds her makeup in place without looking dry or cakey on the skin.

4. BALANCING MIST  This rosewater mist sets the makeup and is also a wonderful toner. It cools hot flashes quickly too and feels refreshing!






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